The FEMA Qualification System

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The primary purpose of the FEMA Qualifications System (FQS) is to provide the best possible customer service to survivors and communities working to respond to, recover from, and mitigate against disasters. FQS improves individual job performance by establishing professional standards for each disaster position. Every FEMA employee will receive FQS training, performance evaluations, and disaster experience for individual position qualification, to ensure FEMA employees have the critical skills and competencies required to perform their duties. FQS helps build FEMA's disaster response and recovery capability by providing personnel with the training and experience needed to assume positions of progressively greater responsibility.

Initial Qualification Status Determination

Each FEMA employee in an incident management position as of June 2011 was evaluated by a panel of subject matter and program experts from the existing FEMA workforce. These experts developed baseline qualifications for each program position and evaluated each cadre member against those standards for training, experience, and performance. The process for determining current FEMA employee qualifications was in compliance with the National Incident Management System and was strictly controlled and monitored to ensure integrity and fairness.

Advancement Process from Trainee to Qualified

FQS has only two rating levels - Trainee and Qualified. Trainees are personnel who are working through the required steps to fully qualify for their position. Fully qualified personnel have met the standards for qualification as determined through a formal process based on their experience, training, and performance.

Here are the steps to move from Trainee to Qualified

  1. An employee meets the minimum experience required for a "Trainee in a single incident management position.
  2. They are provided with a Position Task Book that details the experience, training, and performance required for the position.
  3. They complete all required training for the position.
  4. The employee's work performance during disaster response and recovery activities is assessed by a Certified Evaluator.
  5. The employee's cadre manager submits the completed qualifications package for review to the Regional or Headquarters Qualification Review Board.
  6. A Regional or Headquarters Qualifications Review Board evaluates the completed package and makes a recommendation to identify the employee as either qualified or not qualified.
  7. The Regional or Headquarters Certifying Official concurs or non-concurs with the recommendation of the Qualification Review Board.
  8. The employee's cadre manager informs the employee of the results from the qualification review.

Importance of the Position Task Book

The FEMA Position Task Book contains all the critical behaviors, activities, and tasks required to become qualified in a FEMA incident management or incident support position. The task book also serves as the official record of the employee's evaluation and training. Only employees in the Certified Evaluator role will record a Trainee's successful completion of all required training and task performance in the task book. The task books also serve as a checklist for recertification and as a job aid to assist employees in the performance of their duties.

Impact of Force Structure

The FEMA Force Structure model sets target disaster staffing levels by position based on historic data. Implementation of the Force Structure model ensures that FEMA has enough trained and experienced incident management and incident support personnel to accomplish the goals of the Agency Mission. FQS is designed to support the Force Structure by ensuring that Regional and Headquarters offices train and qualify the adequate number and type of disaster position needed to manage numerous disasters of varying intensity, all at once. It is the employee levels dictated by the Force Structure that will identify how many trainees may work towards qualification in any single position.

Reconsideration Process

Once an employee is certified as a trainee or a fully qualified employee in a position, any reconsideration of that qualification requires the submission of new information for review by the Qualification Review Board. The qualification packet will be resubmitted with the new information and be evaluated by the same panel of subject matter experts that performed the initial evaluation. Employees contact their cadre managers in order to provide new information for qualification reconsideration.

Current FEMA employees seeking more information about the FEMA Qualification System can email FEMA-FQS-Program@fema.dhs.gov or call toll free at 855- FQS-FEMA (855-377-3362) Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. EST.

Curriculum Delivery FQS Course Calendar for 2014

{The schedule below reflects the next three (3) months of class activity and is reviewed / updated weekly}
Updated on: 18th June 2014

 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0088
Course Title: National Disaster Recovery Specialist Course
Date of Course: July 7 - 11, 2014
Course Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Course Description: N/A                 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0157, 0160, 0162, 0165, 0180, 0272
Course Title: Mitigation Mass Training
Date of Course: July 15 - 23, 2014
Course Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Course Description: Mitigation Mass Training                 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0563, 0599, 0880, 0836
Course Title: Mass Training (Week 1) – Basic Management Course, Introduction to FEMA IT & Specialist Component, DSA Specialist, Public Assistance
Date of Course: July 7 - 14, 2014
Course Location: FLETC – Charleston, SC
Course Description: Mass Training Courses       

Course Code:  E/L/B 0381, 0563, 0599, 0836, 0880
Course Title: Mass Training (Week 2) – Project Specialist, Basic Management Course, Introduction to FEMA IT & Specialist Component, Public Assistance, DSA Specialist
Date of Course: July 14 - 18, 2014
Course Location: FLETC – Charleston, SC
Course Description: Mass Training Courses

Course Code:  E/L/B 0085/0086/0823, 0381,0563, 0599, 0880
Course Title: Mass Training (Week 3) – National Disaster & Recovery Support & Coach/ Evaluator Courses, Project Specialist, Basic Management Course, Introduction to FEMA IT & Specialist Component, Public Assistance, DSA Specialist
Date of Course: July 21 - 25, 2014
Course Location: FLETC – Charleston, SC
Course Description: Mass Training Courses

Course Code:  E/L/B 0563, 0599, 0662
Course Title: Mass Training (Week 4) – National Disaster & Recovery Support & Coach/ Evaluator Courses, Project Specialist, Basic Management Course, Introduction to FEMA IT & Specialist Component, SPOT/Logistics Course
Date of Course: July 28 – August 1, 2014
Course Location: FLETC – Charleston, SC
Course Description: Mass Training Courses

 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0113
Course Title: Joint Field Office Procurement Specialist
Date of Course: July 22 - 24, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course is intended to teach the FEMA Joint Field Office (JFO) Procurement Clerk position his / her responsibilities, including files management; correct procedures when filing and working with JFO Contract Folder; JFO Purchase Card Folders; and how to maintain spreadsheets that track costs in the FEMA JFO Procurement Unit.  This course also teaches the FEMA JFO Procurement Clerk how to work in the outside environment, and, in general, support of the FEMA JFO Contracting Specialist.                 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0207
Course Title: Introduction to Hazard Mitigation Field Operations      
Date of Course: July 7-10, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course provides new Hazard Mitigation (HM) Disaster Workforce employees with a practical, applications-based opportunity to learn the basic concepts, principles, and practices needed to be successful in HM disaster assignments.

 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0217
Course Title: Equal Rights Officer Update

Date of Course: July 14 - 17, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description:  This course explains changes in Equal Employment Opportunity and Civil Rights laws and policies through a series of presentations and exercises.

 

Course Code:  E/L/B 0220
Course Title: Leadership and Mentoring for ERO

Date of Course: July 12 - 13, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description:  This course is designed to teach ERO team leads the policies and procedures they need to know in order to function as a team lead in the field. It also includes information on the FEMA Qualification System (FQS).

Course Code:  E/L/B 0312
Course Title: Fundamentals of  Building Science
Date of Course: September 15 – 18, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course is designed to present information on the risks posed by natural hazards, and the basic scientific and engineering concepts for hazard-resistant buildings and facilities.  The course reviews information pertaining to impacts of wind, flood, earthquake, and Wildland / urban interface fire on the constructed environment, and explains key performance and construction issues related to floods, wind, wildfires, and earthquakes.

Course Code:  E/L/B 0598
Course Title: FEMA Incident Workforce Academy {FIWA}
Date of Course: July 22 - 31, 2014
Course Location: CDP, Anniston, AL
Course Description: Course is comprised of thirteen units that shall provide FEMA employees with basic information that will prepare them for incident and support activities.  Participants, upon completion of this training will be able to: identify steps to prepare for deployment to incident management or support positions; describe the purpose and function of emergency management; as well as describing the history, mission, authorities and organizational structure of FEMA; the declaration process and the intergovernmental and interagency roles and responsibilities; the concepts of Response and Recovery, and Whole Community; the delivery process of the Stafford Act Programs; and the roles, functions and structure of field operations.  This course will also maximize interactions between instructors and students utilizing such training methods as, instructor presentations; student-centered learning, (student’s learn from each other’s experience); experiential learning, (students learn from experiencing); and group discussions.

Course Code:  E/L/B 0598
Course Title: FEMA Incident Workforce Academy {FIWA}
Date of Course: September 16 - 25, 2014
Course Location: CDP, Anniston, AL
Course Description: Course is comprised of thirteen units that shall provide FEMA employees with basic information that will prepare them for incident and support activities.  Participants, upon completion of this training will be able to: identify steps to prepare for deployment to incident management or support positions; describe the purpose and function of emergency management; as well as describing the history, mission, authorities and organizational structure of FEMA; the declaration process and the intergovernmental and interagency roles and responsibilities; the concepts of Response and Recovery, and Whole Community; the delivery process of the Stafford Act Programs; and the roles, functions and structure of field operations.  This course will also maximize interactions between instructors and students utilizing such training methods as, instructor presentations; student-centered learning, (student’s learn from each other’s experience); experiential learning, (students learn from experiencing); and group discussions.

Course Code:  E/L/B 0743
Course Title: FEMA Telecommunications Specialist
Date of Course: August 4 - 8, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course provides a foundation for acquiring the tools and skills needed to install, operate, and maintain all communications systems, software, and peripheral devices, and provide customer service and support to the end-users of communications equipment and services for those new to this position.  Participants completing this course will have received an in-depth outline of the tasks and procedures performed by the Information Technology (IT) Telecommunications Specialist and how to accomplish them.

Course Code:  E/L/B 0750
Course Title: Policies, Procedures and Practice for External Affairs, Part I
Date of Course: August 11 - 16, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course provides the knowledge and tools necessary to perform job functions in FEMA External Affairs (EA) and Emergency Support Function (ESF) #15 operations.  The course, taken sequentially with EA basic component courses, prepares participants to work seamlessly with other EA components in delivering comprehensive, integrated, and unified messages to all stakeholders.                       

Course Code:  E/L/B 0780
Course Title: Basics for FEMA Disaster Safety Officers
Date of Course: September 8 -12, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course provides the knowledge and tools necessary to perform job functions in FEMA External Affairs (EA) and Emergency Support Function (ESF) #15 operations.  The course, taken sequentially with EA basic component courses, prepares participants to work seamlessly with other EA components in delivering comprehensive, integrated, and unified messages to all stakeholders.

Course Code:  E/L/B 0880
Course Title: Disaster Survivor Assistance Specialist
Date of Course: June 23 – 28, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD.
Course Description: This course is designed for FEMA personnel assigned to the Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) Specialist position within disaster operations.  Curriculum includes a description of the DSA mission and the survivor-centric services provided by the Specialists utilizing the AIR (Assess, Inform, and Report) concept.  Course participants will also be instructed on how to locate resources and referrals available to disaster survivors by FEMA partners and relay this information to individuals, community leaders, and businesses in the disaster-affected area.  Lastly, this course also includes how to perform Registration Intake for Individual Assistance, as well as how to perform case review/status update on an applicant’s file requesting FEMA disaster assistance.                                          

Course Code:  E/L/B 0981
Course Title: Advanced Disaster Safety Officer
Date of Course: July 21 – 25, 2014
Course Location: EMI, Emmitsburg, MD
Course Description: This course is mandatory for all safety professionals within the FEMA Safety Cadre.  This course meets the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requirements for what a Safety Officer must know, what to look for, and how to look for it.  Completion of this course is required for credentialing in accordance with the National Safety Cadre.

 

Last Updated: 
07/24/2014 - 16:00
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